Blind dates are never out of dateBill's Briefs, Bottom Highlights Thursday, November 24th, 2011
Social Chaos: Bill's Briefs
The blind date has never lost its popularity. With my family, it was to make me happy with a nice young woman; later my friends assumed the unasked for obligation and tried to make me happy with a nice young man. Recently, the difference of being “young” has morphed into “young at heart.”
I have mentioned before, I and my Japanese partner of 37 years can’t live together due to visa requirements, and we have arranged our lives accordingly. There are those, however, who insist I should find someone for when my friend isn’t visiting me. Thus the continuing blind date campaign.
The vocabulary of the activity seems to have remained since high school, complete with its ominous hidden meanings – heavy-set, big-boned, tons of fun – all connote Kate Smith or Jackie Gleason (ask a senior). High forehead means bald, “with flats you’ll be fine” equals one of them is either 5’10” or 5’5”, and so on.
None of these attributes are in any way negative or unacceptable. I’m upset about the beating around the bush and marginal deceit in the descriptions. And all so unnecessary, since it will come to naught once one meets the paragon.
When asked, “What does she/he look like?” the answers are varied; great personality, lovely person, PhD, wild sense of humor, reads books, likes to travel, etc. None of which answer the question and instead lead to expectations of Medusa or the Phantom of the Opera.
Those in search of a live-in helpmate should beware the cheerfully reported “only smokes outside” and “a casual housekeeper.” I’d also be very leery of “a little vegan” or “very into cats.”
The older crowd receives an additional variety of data such as, seven grandchildren, another place in Vegas (or on Section 8), will get Medicare soon, the new hearing aid works wonders, two years sober, looks 60, just came out. Nothing blatantly positive or negative, but surely points to ponder.
My most hated adjective is “spry.” It never implies anything but a white-haired octogenarian gleefully clicking his heels together while swinging his cane in the air; a regular Rumpelstiltskin. Not an ideal date.
Do I want a blind date for a romance or partnership? No, but I am interested in meeting new people and making new friends. Am I against blind dates? No.
My concern is those involved should report honestly and not make so much of the physical. Strange as it might seem to younger people, for seniors in search of a commitment the more meaningful qualities are those previously mentioned as distractions from the possibly unflattering, but true adjectives; great personality, lovely person, PhD, wild sense of humor, reads books, likes to travel, etc. These are the sparks which can lead to meaningful companionship. Too bad we have to get old before we figure this out.
For you match-makers out there with friends who are on the hunt, go for it, but save everyone a lot of time and be truthful. And leave me alone.
Feeling down? Get up and get out!
Like many seniors, instead of attending to the present I spend too much time reviewing the past with a tendency to concentrate on friends now gone. The result is an occasional spell of lethargic melancholy.
Such was the case recently. I found myself suffering from inertia of inordinate severity, in other words, a bad case of the blahs.
Not wishing to burden my friends with my condition, I moped around my apartment thinking seriously of doing something constructive to change my thought pattern and brighten my mood. I had several choices; clean the bathroom and kitchen, straighten and cull the closets or arrange the pile of important junk on my desk to at least see the wood. After agonizing over the problem, I made a firm decision and went to the zoo.
What a wonderful destination just a few blocks away. The beautiful flowers and incredible array of animals and birds always lifts my spirits; the flamboyant colors, towering feathers, outrageous strutting and posturing all so outside the everyday life of San Diego. (Although one might quibble about Hillcrest.)
Strolling around the exotic wonders of the wildlife habitats, bird pavilions, fantastic new elephant area, gorilla suite, etc. soon soothes my suffering psyche and tames my twisted troubles. (OK, I agree, that was a bit much.)
The sky tram is another fun adventure. Although I will not soon forget the time it stopped half-way across the canyon leaving my partner and I swinging in mid-air for 30 minutes. We became quite friendly with the couple from Sweden who were swaying in sync beside us. We were madly grinning and declaring what fun it all was until the woman’s laughter became quite hysterical with mirth. Her husband had her bury her head in her scarf and shut her eyes and all was well. I remained a tower of American strength going so far as to playfully rock the gondola back and forth until my friend’s hysterical mirth made me stop.
Seniors should be aware that during the day, dozens of buses unload hordes of children from nearby San Diego and Tijuana schools. Well-behaved as they usually are, of occasion, they can drown out the elephant’s roar. For those who wish to escape the sea of Lilliputians one can arrive when they start to leave in the late afternoon and stay for the wonderful evening shows and events.
A stroll through the zoo is worth an hour with a shrink or a 30 minute special from your masseur. So when you are not your usual, happy, fascinating self, the one thing you don’t do is sit and stew. Try the zoo or any fun, interesting, beautiful place like a park, museum, Seaport Village, Old Town, the beach etc; or stroll, window-shop and people-watch in Hillcrest or the Gaslamp.
Get out and get moving. Whether 20 or 90 no one knows the future – so live now!
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